Reliable & Unreliable Gold
Gold can be split into two categories:
- Reliable gold - Any bounty you get from hero kills, Roshan, and global gold from towers is added to your reliable gold pool.
- Unreliable gold - Everything else (creep kills, neutrals, etc).
The difference between the two (except from how each is earned) is how each one is spent:
- Dying can only take away gold from your unreliable gold pool and not from your reliable gold.
- Buying items uses up your unreliable gold first before using your reliable gold.
- Buyback uses reliable gold first.
In the end you still have a fixed amount of total gold (you just add the two together).
The purpose of having these two categories is to encourage ganking and tower kills that accumulate the reliable gold pool, which is gold that cannot be lost from dying.
 Acquiring gold
 Starting gold
Each player begins with 625 starting gold when they choose their hero. If a player chooses to random their hero, they will gain an additional 200 gold. However, if they repick, they will lose 150 gold as well as their bonus gold if applicable, resulting in the player having only 475 starting gold.
 Periodic gold
Each player receives 1 unreliable gold every 0.6 seconds, which results in 5 gold every 3 seconds.
There are a few items and hero abilities in Dota 2 which allow you to boost your gold income, namely:
Unreliable gold is earned every time you last hit a creep, tower or Roshan. Each type of creep has its own bounty range.
The first time a hero is killed by a non-neutral/non-ally unit it will give a bonus 200 reliable gold to the killer; this is called First Blood
When there is only 1 assist by a hero to a kill by creeps or towers, the kill is given to the hero. When there are multiple assists to such a kill, the gold is split amongst all heroes that have assists.
Every time you kill an enemy hero you are awarded reliable gold with the formula:
- (streak value + 200) + (hero lvl*9)
Where streak value is:
- 0 if the hero has no kills since last respawn
- 0 if the hero has killed another hero and not died yet
- 0 If the hero has two kills in a row
- 125 Killing Spree (Three kills in a row)
- 250 Dominating (Four kills in a row)
- 375 Mega Kill! (Five kills in a row)
- 500 Unstoppable! (Six kills in a row)
- 625 Wicked Sick (Seven kills in a row)
- 750 Monster Kill!!! (Eight kills in a row)
- 875 Godlike! (Nine kills in a row)
- 1000 Beyond Godlike! (Ten or more kills in a row)
Heroes that are in a 1300 area and not being the killer will be granted a certain amount of reliable gold, depending on total heroes in that area.
- 1 Hero: 125 + (12 × Dying Hero's Level)
- 2 Heroes: 40 + (10 × Dying Hero's Level)
- 3 Heroes: 10 + (6 × Dying Hero's Level)
- 4 or 5 Heroes: (6 × Dying Hero's Level)
 Towers, Roshan and Couriers
Last hitting a tower grants the killing player a bonus 150-250 gold. Additionally, a reliable gold bonus is granted to the entire killing team.
- Tier 1 Tower: 200 team gold
- Tier 2 Tower: 240 team gold
- Tier 3 Tower: 280 team gold
- Tier 4 Tower: 320 team gold
Roshan grants a 150-400 bounty to the last hitting player. Additionally, each player on the killing team is granted 200 gold.
A walking courier gives 150 gold to each enemy player if killed, while a flying courier gives 175 gold to each enemy player.
Items can be sold for 50% of the price they were bought. Items can be resold immediately (within 10 seconds) for full price to revert an accidental purchase. Items that have been purchased while dead can be sold if that item was bought during the same death otherwise selling items cannot be done while dead, even within the grace period.
 Spending (or losing) gold
 Picking a Hero
Picking a hero in any mode will cost you 200 gold, thus leaving each player that picked a hero 625 gold. If you should decide to re-pick it will cost you an extra 100 gold, thus leaving you with only 525 gold to start off with. Should you decide to random (or play All Random), receiving a hero will cost you no gold.
- You will lose one gold per second if you haven't picked a hero after the selection timer runs out in All Pick.
Swapping a hero that you randomed costs you 100 gold, on top of gaining the 200 gold bonus for picking a random hero - leaving you 725 gold.
The main purpose of gold is to buy items. The player with the most gold will be able to buy the most items and will therefore (usually) have the strongest hero. What items each player buys depends on his hero role.
Every time you die you lose 30×(Level of your Hero) unreliable gold; the only way to reduce this amount is with a Bloodstone (you'll lose 25 gold less for every Bloodstone charge). Dying cannot take away reliable gold.
 Buying Back
While your hero is dead, you have the option of "buying back" and respawning instantly in exchange for a fee:
- 100 + (Level2×1.5) + (GameTime×15), rounded down to a multiplier of 50.
This will take away from your reliable gold pool first. Buyback has a cooldown of 6 minutes.
After buying back, 25% of your hero's remaining respawn time will be added to your next death. Additionally, heroes are unable to gain unreliable gold until their normal respawn time finishes. The gold icon on the HUD will flash red when this time finishes.
 Abandoning the Game
After being disconnected from the game for more than 5 minutes, all of your gold is equally redivided between your team players, including the (1.67 gold/sec) passive bonus gold gain. The passive bonus gold gain is restored once you reconnect to the game, but the rest of the gold is not (including the gold missed from the passive gold gain).